|By DAVID EGGERT, Associated Press|
While Snyder supported traditional marriage in the 2010 campaign, his penchant since then has been to deflect questions about his personal views and defer to the ban
His office describes it as a "complex, unusual situation," and says it's "sensitive to feelings on this issue."
Snyder's detachment is exasperating critics who say he should take more of a leadership role, even if it's an issue he would prefer go away. His dogged neutrality also reflects the challenge for Republican leaders nationally whose opposition to gay marriage is becoming less visible as the party works to improve its image and polls suggests most Americans support same-sex marriage.
"It's clear that the
Schuette, who's also up for re-election and has an eye on the governor's office in 2018, is actively fighting to keep the gay marriage prohibition in place. His office went outside the state, and even to
"I took an oath as attorney general to protect and defend the constitution. And I'm going to fulfill that oath," Schuette said. "The constitution is not like a buffet line at some restaurant where you can pick and choose which item you might wish."
Seventeen states and the
Democratic attorneys general in at least seven states have declined to defend same-sex-marriage bans that have been challenged in court by gay couples. For Republicans, however, the issue is a balancing act.
"Snyder has taken a position that is pretty predictable — he's going to uphold whatever the state law is. Politically, it's probably a safe position to be in," said
An EPIC-MRA poll of likely
Snyder has no primary opponent to worry about despite upsetting conservatives by pushing for
Some within the tea party also have been critical of prominent Republican strategist
McNeilly said Republican leaders are acting responsibly for now while waiting to see what happens at the appeals court. Making sure gay couples can marry and not be denied federal benefits is "within the Republican tradition and Republican principles," he said.
"I do think the party needs to modernize its world view more broadly on these issues," McNeilly said. "The
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